Finally, the Deleted Avengers: Endgame Thor Tries to Kiss Valkyrie Scene No One Asked For
You may be aware that I was not a fan of the choices that the MCU made regarding Thor in Avengers: Endgame. At least there was one small favor—an attempt by Thor (Chris Hemsworth) to kiss his friend Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) at movie’s end was cut. But now we get to see it, hooray.
Regardless of how you felt about what Endgame did with Thor, it’s clear that turning him into a comedic punchline was a through-line that continued in the script, even after the traumatized God of Thunder gets some of his mojo back going into the fight against Thanos. Even after Tony Stark is dead, and the Avengers scattered, Thor was still set up to do wacky, out-of-touch things. Like randomly try and kiss his friend who is very much not into it.
Thor tries to kiss Valkyrie in an ‘Endgame’ deleted scene pic.twitter.com/RBCnBblPRX
— Marvel Facts & News (@MarveIFacts) February 6, 2020
In a deleted scene from close to the movie’s end, Thor is preparing to leave with the Guardians of the Galaxy, while Valkyrie stays behind to lead the Asgardians on Earth. After Rocket charmingly calls Thor “airbag,” in yet another of Endgame’s witty bon mots about Thor’s weight, Valkyrie puts her hand on Thor’s elbow and wishes him good luck. It’s a touching moment, from one friend to the other. Thor had a big impact on Valkyrie’s life—she might still be an aimless scavenger on Sakaar without him, and now she’s a fearless leader. They have been, essentially, brother and sister in arms. Then Thor, misreading the situation, leans in to try and kiss her.
Valkyrie moves away and says, “What are you doing?” and Thor draws back and says, “Oh … the squeeze,” referring to her hand on his arm, and Valkyrie says, “Yeah, it was like a ‘good luck’ squeeze, it wasn’t like a ‘kiss me’ squeeze.” Thor sort of shakes himself and shakes his head and laughs, “So embarrassing.” Then he adds, “Well, good luck with all of that,” indicating the land around them, and Valkyrie says, “No misinterpreting that!”
The whole scene is played for awkward, cringe comedy that is saved by Hemsworth and Thompson’s natural chemistry. They clearly delight in being scene partners (why else undertake something as godawful as Men In Black: International?) and if this scene had to be filmed, they make it much less terrible than it could have been, as this Twitter user points out:
While i’m glad this wasn’t in the movie, I really like it. I love how Valkyrie didn’t overreact or scold him. Just a simple misunderstanding that didn’t make the friendship weird.
— ◊✪➳ϟ✇⧗۞⎊⍟︽✵︽Jay ︽✵︽⍟⎊۞⧗✇ ϟ✪◊ (@StormLord96) February 7, 2020
It’s true that this is a great factor of the scene—the friendship wasn’t made weird (we hope?) and they laugh it off and go their separate ways. It’s upsetting that this existed in the first place, however. The Thor and Valkyrie relationship was excellent for many reasons, but many of us loved that it never tried to force or imply a romance, and was instead based on personal connection and mutual admiration.
The characters have heat, and spark off each other, but they stay platonic—often rare in giant action movies, and wonderful to see. Initial plans to make Valkyrie a love interest way back in Ragnarok were nixed and instead we got the gift of a fascinating, strong, complicated, beautiful female character who befriends the male hero and stays his stalwart friend. Valkyrie is also set up, for all intents and purposes, to now be one of the first openly LGBTQ+ heroes in the MCU.
Back in June, we heard directly from the mouths of Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson that kisses between their characters had been cut from Ragnarok, and Ragnarok screenwriter Eric Pearson has spoken about how much better the movie worked without a romance:
We didn’t want to start from that place. It was like, Let’s give Valkyrie her own story that connects with Thor … and if it makes sense for them to get together, then great. You’ve got two really good-looking people who can fight and who’d probably be [good together] if the story went there, but it just didn’t. It became more about the mutual respect.
But in Avengers: Endgame, previous characterizations often went up in smoke, especially if some sort of “comedy” could be milked from it. And so we have Thor, the 1500-year-old God who knows damn well how to just be friends with a lovely warrior lady (hello, Sif), a man who recently bantered complex physics back and forth with Bruce Banner in Ragnarok, reduced to a bumbling schlemiel who can’t make sense of a genial hand on his arm.
So glad this forced comedic relief was kept out. Just wish all of the other forced comedic relief interactions were left out.
— Chris Parrish (@ChrisPParrish) February 6, 2020
It’s been nearly eleven months and the character choices made in Endgame still exhaust me. At least this one was axed, hopefully the sign of others behind the scenes realizing that nothing good came from this unfortunate interaction.
Can’t wait for Taika Waititi to make us forget any of this ever happened when Thor: Love and Thunder hits screens in 2021.
(via Twitter, image: Marvel Entertainment/screengrab)
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